Long before embarking on his talking picture career, Tom Powers was a firmly established Broadway star. He began as a musical comedy lead, then moved on to dynamic dramatic roles in such Theatre Guild productions as Strange Interlude, in which he created the role of Charles Marsden. Except for a brief flurry of activity at the Vitagraph studios in 1910, Powers barely gave movies a second thought until he was invited to play the murder victim in 1944's Double Indemnity. Powers spent the rest of his professional life before the cameras, usually playing coarse, blunt detectives and businessmen. In the early '50s, Powers remained on call at 20th Century Fox for unbilled minor roles in such films as Deadline U.S.A. (1952), We're Not Married (1952), and Phone Call From a Stranger (1952). He also appeared in a dozen of TV programs, among them The Lone Ranger, Fireside Theatre, Four Star Playhouse, and Climax. A prolific writer, Tom Powers published the best-selling memoir He Knew Them All, and in 1935 starred in a syndicated radio series in which he read his own poetry.
by Hal Erickson biography